Makovsky - Events & Observances Campaign
Company: Makovsky, Washington, DC
Company Description: Makovsky is one of the world's leading independent communications consultancies, building businesses and reputations with ideas that cross the boundaries of traditional, digital, social and experiential media.
Nomination Category: Corporate Communications, Investor Relations, & Public Relations Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Communications or PR Campaign of the Year - Events & Observances
Nomination Title: A Tribute to Heroes in the Global Campaign Against Violent Extremism
Tell the story about this nominated campaign since January 1, 2016 (up to 650 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms.
Societies across the world face the rising threat of violent extremism. This threat has many faces: from devastating terrorist attacks that strike at the heart of communities to the murder of journalists and enslavement of women. Cultural cleansing is becoming a systematic campaign against cultural heritage and diversity. Our shared humanity is under attack.
All this calls for new forms of action by states and by international organizations. It also requires the leadership and engagement of women and men of courage and integrity. That is why last September, Makovsky Integrated Communications was approached to quickly organize a black-tie event on behalf of a distinguished committee of women to honor individuals and groups for their extraordinary contributions to the global campaign against violent extremism.
The primary goal was not just to organize a successful event, but to create an event that supported and recognized individuals and programs around the world that fight extremism by empowering young people, protect humanity’s common heritage, creating an action-oriented interfaith dialogue and educating for peace.
The event was planned and implemented by Makovsky, and hosted by seven distinguished women—Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO; Sara Bloomfield, Director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum; Ambassador Esther Coopersmith; Meera Gandhi, Founder and CEO, The Giving Back Foundation; Francine Lefrak, Harvard Women’s Leadership Board; Deborah Lehr, Chairman and Co-Founder of the Antiquities Coalition; Catherine Reynolds, Founder and CEO of Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation.
In less than one month, Makovsky successfully navigated the event from concept to completion. This included securing a venue, creating a guest list and conducting outreach, developing an impactful program, producing multiple videos, managing media relations, and managing all day-of logistics.
Makovsky quickly secured an appropriate venue for the spirit of the event at The Temple of Dendur in the Sackler Wing at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The team acquired the majority of attendees through compiling lists of relative organizations, embassies, and consuls, and inviting more than 1,000 guests. This was met with an over whelming response to attend, causing the initial attendance estimation to go from 300 to well over 400.
Working with the host committee, Makovsky developed an awards program with additional speakers for the evenings agenda. This included distributing the awards to the ten individuals and groups who were recognized, plus a special tribute to Elie Wiesel by Ambassador Ronald Lauder. Other guest speakers included Daniel Weiss, President of the Metropolitan Museum of Art; jazz legend Herbie Hancock; MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle; and Archbishop Timothy Dolan.
In addition, Makovsky secured CNN’s Wolf Blitzer to emcee the event. The team also reached out to and pitched reporters, resulting in more than two dozen reporters in attendance from Newsweek to Bloomberg to the Washington Post.
To bring home what violent extremism has done to cultures around the world, Makovsky produced two compelling videos that were shown larger than life in the grandeur of the darkened Temple of Dendur wall. The first was blackbox video of Elie Wiesel speaking on being an “eyewitness.” The other “We stand:” a throughline video of people from different cultures with a powerful montage of images demonstrated the cultural loss, religious intolerance and war.
The 420-person gala dinner honoring ten individuals and groups for their extraordinary contributions to the global campaign against violent extremism was a smashing success. The event was put together in a timeframe—one month—that many said could not be done and the theme was so compelling that the event exceeded the attendance goal. Further, the committee of women and guests raved at how wonderful the evening was from the location to the décor, from the program to the speakers, from the issues to the videos. Moreover, the event brought into focus the struggle of many communities, but also the hope and opportunity for change across the globe to combat violent extremism. Makovsky was asked to organize the event again this year.
In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) of the chief features and results of this nominated PR program since the beginning of 2016 (up to 150 words).
-Secured venue and vendors: the event was held in The Temple of Dendur in the Sackler Wing at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
-Acquired the vast majority of attendees: quickly compiling lists of organizations, embassies, and consuls, invites went out to more than 1,000 with an over whelming response for attendance.
-Developed the program: along with a awards program, there was a special tribute to Elie Wiesel by Ambassador Ronald Lauder and other guest speakers included Daniel Weiss, President of the Metropolitan Museum of Art; jazz legend Herbie Hancock; MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle; New York’s cultural icon Emily Rafferty and Archbishop Timothy Dolan.
-Produced two outstanding videos: Elie Wiesel on being an eyewitness and “We Stand” a montage of cultural loss, war and the impact of heroes.
-Organized and managed media: the event was emceed by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and attended by more than two dozen national and international reporters.